Round Two (Group A)
Bd
White
Res
Black
101   Ibragimov, Ildar (1.0)
½
  Gurevich, Dmitry (1.0)
102   Serper, Gregory (1.0)
½
  Onischuk, Alexander (1.0)
103   Gonzalez, Renier (1.0)
1-0
  Stripunsky, Alexander (1.0)
104   Schneider, Dmitry (1.0)
½
  Benjamin, Joel (1.0)
105   Dlugy, Maxim (1.0)
½
  Kraai, Jesse (1.0)
106   Friedel, Joshua (1.0)
½
  De Firmian, Nick (1.0)
107   Goldin, Alexander (0.5)
1-0
  Tate,Emory A (1.0)
108   Kudrin, Sergey (0.5)
0-1
  Finegold, Benjamin (0.5)
109   Bercys, Salvijus (0.5)
1-0
  Lenderman, Alex (0.5)
110   Akobian, Varuzhan (0.0)
½
  Schneider, Igor (0.5)
111   Kleiman, Jake (0.0)
½
  Nakamura, Hikaru (0.0)
112   Epstein, Esther (w) (0.0)
0-1
  Stein, Alan (0.0)
113   Florean, Andrei (0.0)
½
  Ross, Laura (w) (0.0)
114   Fernandez, Daniel (0.0)
1-0
  Vicary, Elizabeth (w) (0.0)
115   Goletiani, Rusudan (w) (0.0)
1-0
  Cottrell-Finegold, Kelly (w) (0.0)
116   Zenyuk, Iryna (w) (0.0)
0-1
  Baginskaite, Camilla (w) (0.0)

Luck of the Draw

In this round, half of the matches in both group ended in draws. Hopefully, this isn't a sign of things to come, but there hasn't been a rash of short draws not yet. Hikaru Nakamura stumbled yet again to the unheralded Jake Kleiman and due to the characteristics of the Swiss system, his chances of defending his title are slipping away. However, he is the "ultimate fighter" and is expected to make a run.

Renier Gonzalez who makes up 1/3 of the "Cuban Mafia" scored a nice victory over last year's runner-up Alexander Stripunsky a strange game ending in a cute tactic. Emory Tate ran into a buzzsaw when trotting out the sharp Benko Gambit against Alexander Goldin. The opening was very dynamic, but Tate may have missed the best chance to keep the dynamism with 11a6!? and 14Qg5!? White's pieces gained momentum and Goldin launched a direct attack  on Tate's king ending in a mating net.

Daniel Fernandez, who was born in Peru, cannot be a part of the "Cuban Mafia," but certainly he is a member of "Miami Mafia." South Florida is the hotbed for chess in the state and Fernandez spent many years as a youth traveling with his father to tournaments in the southern region. Having left a distinguished scholastic career behind, he is now a student at the University of Texas-Dallas. In his game with Elizabeth Vicary, he had to come from a bad position to steal a victory.


Selected Games

IM Renier Gonzalez-GM Alexander Stripunsky, 1-0
FM Salvijus Bercys-IM Alexander Lenderman, 1-0
IM Daniel Fernandez-WFM Elizabeth Vicary, 1-0

PGN download (round 2 - all games)

Round Two (Group B)
Bd
White
Res
Black
201   Kamsky, Gata (1.0)
½
  Perelshteyn, Eugene (1.0)
202   Wojtkiewicz,Aleks (1.0)
½
  Shabalov, Alexander (1.0)
203   Kreiman, Boris (1.0)
0-1
  Novikov, Igor (1.0)
204   Milman, Lev (1.0)
½
  Becerra, Julio (1.0)
205   Shulman, Yury (1.0)
1-0
  Tuvshintugs, Batchimeg (w) (1.0)
206   Liu, Elliott (0.5)
½
  Kaidanov, Gregory (0.5)
207   Gulko, Boris (0.5)
½
  Muhammad, Stephen (0.5)
208   Ivanov, Alexander (0.5)
1-0
  Zatonskih, Anna (w) (0.5)
209   Christiansen, Larry (0.5)
1-0
  Airapetian, Chouchanik (w) (0.5)
210   Kriventsov, Stanislav (0.5)
½
  Yermolinsky, Alex (0.5)
211   Fedorowicz, John P (0.5)
½
  Ginsburg, Mark (0.5)
212   Fishbein, Alexander (0.0)
1-0
  Sarkar, Justin (0.0)
213   Abrahamyan, Tatev (w) (0.0)
½
  Browne, Walter (0.0)
214   Ippolito, Dean J (0.0)
1-0
  Itkis,Hana (w) (0.0)
215   Lugo, Blas (0.0)
1-0
  West, Vanessa (w) (0.0)
216   Vigorito, David E (0.0)
1-0
  Christiansen,Natasha (w) (0.0)

White is Right?

Half of the games were drawn and all but one of the other games were won by white.
Igor Novikov again demonstrated his skill in handling the Sicilian with a rousing victory over Boris Kreiman.  Kreiman had been dogged in a controversy of match-fixing prior to the tournament, but escaped disqualification. Hometown favorite Elliott Lui held his second Grandmaster in as many rounds by drawing Gregory Kaidanov.

Stephen Muhammad played a nice Dutch Defense against Boris Gulko and appeared to have a slight initiative after 19f4 (diagram). Gulko did just enough to hold his position together and forced a three-fold repetition. Muhammad is showing good form, but will get a tough assignment in Alexander Fishbein in round 3.

Most of the women in the group took a hard fall, but
Chouchanik Airapetian recorded her second draw with a Grandmaster. Tatev Abrahamyan nicked Walter Browne for a draw and a disappointing loss to Eugene Perelshteyn in the last round.

In Gulko-Muhammad, black wrests the initiative with 19...f4

Selected Games

GM Boris Kreiman-GM Igor Novikov, 0-1
IM-elect Stephen Muhammad-GM Boris Gulko, -
WFM Tatev Abrahamyan-GM Walter Browne, -

PGN download (round 2 - all games)



Round #2 Information Center


The Chess Drum

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Report written by Dr. Daaim Shabazz, The Chess Drum